Working from Home

I really, really love my new business designing sites and blogs for people.  I’m really proud of what I’ve achieved in the last two months.  I’ve worked for some wonderful creative bloggers, who have been so kind and supportive to my design business. I have clients lined up until Easter, and I couldn’t be happier with how it’s going.

But I have a problem, I don’t know when to turn off.

I realised that there was a problem with how I was working, when Miss L who is a massive iPhone fan was delighted when it self destructed.  And I mean REALLY HAPPY that she’d get some ‘Mummy Time’.  Last week was a nightmare as I was trying to do bits and pieces while she was on half term, I should have taken the week off but I didn’t. If I’d been in an office working for someone else I wouldn’t have had a second thought about taking the week off.

So from now on I’m going to treat it like it’s an actual office job, there’s no point in me working for myself and then still working at 12pm at night.  I might as well accept that things sometimes take a little longer and plan accordingly.

  • Paperwork that needs to be dealt with and invoicing can have it’s own day
  • I need to set up a work area – the sofa isn’t really cutting it anymore. Not sure where it’s going to be, but maybe the dining table and a shelf from the bookcase will do?
  • So I’m going to take most of Easter holidays off
  • Work hours will be 8.45 – 3pm and NO WORKING IN EVENINGS!
  • I’m going to disconnect my VioletPosy email in the evenings so I don’t see it.
  • I need to make time to design my Violetposy Design site – still not even started!
  • Do some Sage Line 50 Training for the accounts.

If you work from home, or have your own business what do you do to keep a work/life balance?  I’d be really interested to hear, I never thought it would be so hard.

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Featured Etsy Shop of the Month – Little Ginger’s Tea Shop

I Took The Handmade Pledge! BuyHandmade.org

I’ve become a little addicted to Etsy of late, there are some really gorgeous handmade goods on there. If you’ve not been on Etsy, pop over and you’re in for a wonderful surprise.  So in order to support handmade goods and other home workers, I’m going to feature an Etsy Shop of the month on Violet Posy.

I was delighted this week to be contacted by Nikki at Little Ginger’s Tea Shop who asked if I’d look at their Etsy shop and if I’d give them a mention on here.  As I like their beautiful hand embellished tableware so much, I’ve done it as a little interview with Nikki and her partners – hope you like it?.

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Kissing Birds Placemat

Tell me about your company?

Little Gingers Teashop is a student based company who believe it is important to produce beautiful handcrafted individual products which point away from the mainstream market. Since forming in October 2008 we have designed and produced versatile tableware, which are all hand crafted, limited edition products with unique and individual bird motifs. The company is run by five aspiring fashion and textile students from the University of Portsmouth.

What made you decide to set up?

We were given the opportunity to set up our own business because it is part of our degree course. The experience has been most rewarding and it has been exciting to run our own business.

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Kissing Birds Placemat

Who or what inspires you?

The main inspiration for our product designs has been birds and cakes. The birds offer a feminine aspect to our designs, whilst the cakes portray a fun attractive look. As a company we are all highly inspired by textile designs. Therefore we made our design motifs highly appealing and eye catching.

Who are your design influences

At Little Gingers Teashop we enjoy keeping up-to date with the latest trends, especially in homewares and textile design. During this project we have found the work of Cath Kidston, Emma Bridgewater and Lisa Stickley to be highly influential through the use of twee prints and candy-like colours. We also love looking at Rob Ryan‘s work as he has created so many beautiful designs and is always updating.

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Little Gingers Table Runner

What are your favourite design blogs/websites

Little Gingers Teashop enjoying reading blogs such as: Print and Pattern and Wee Birdy. At Little Gingers Teashop we believe it is essential to research inspiring designers and also support the work of new designers too.

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Thank you very much to the Little Ginger’s Tea Shop Team not only do I adore their product, they’ve bought new sites and blogs to my attention.  I wish them continued sucess with both their store and their studies.  I hope they remember me when they have a fabulous home store in London!

If you’d like your Etsy shop to be featured here next month drop me a comment or an e-mail

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Fabulous News

I’ve finally got some work!!!  A friend who works at a local construction company recomended me to her boss and he liked what I’d done previously so has hired me to do his company’s website and mail out brochures!

THANKGOD!  With the cost of petrol, food and my daughter needing a whole new school uniform (she’s grown out of the one I bought her the begining of this year!)  I needed to earn some cash.  PHEW!  So I’m going to start it when I get back from my holiday and I need to buy my friend some flowers 🙂

Also because I’ve not had a lot to do recently I’ve been working on the mock up of the Violet Posy homewear site, which I have to say is looking pretty fab.

Wish me luck on getting more work!

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Website Design

I’ve lost my mojo, I just can’t think of a thing to do with my friend Linda’s holistic therapy website.  I knocked up the last one from a template as I was short of time.  But I promised that once I finished work, I’d re-do it and now I just can’t seem to get it right.

It could be because I’m doing it on my Mac and I am used to doing websites in Windows, I just can’t seem to get on with iWeb, I think I might need to break out my old Dell and Sharepoint Designer….that said I can’t even decide if it should be blues or greens….used to be indescive and now I’m not so sure!! ARGGH!

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Time for a change

I’ve blogged about this over on GeekMum, but the big news is that I’ve resigned from my job! A bit scary, but I’ve decided that I’m really going to go for it and start my business. I’m going to try a few things and see which one takes off.

Betty is *still* growing she’s turning 5 months in the next couple of days and she’s now I hope almost full grown.  Here she is in her dog ‘nest’ as you can see she keeps eating her bed ::SIGH::.

Betty sleeping

 

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It’s been a while..

Sorry for not having updated this blog for ages, but life has been manic.  We’ve had the whole end of term Christmas fun including my daughter’s first nativity play, which was lovely.  Here is the Christmas Tree that was in the Cathedral, it was totally amazing.

Betty is now a very large puppy, I can’t believe she was ever as small as the picture further down.  She’s now 4 months old and looks like this:

And last and not least, work has been a busy nightmare.  In fact it got to the point last Thursday where I realised I hadn’t slept properly for about 3 weeks and it was 4am and I was up worrying about work stuff that I no longer have any control over, so I decided it was time to quit!.

Friday I resigned…..and now I’m wondering what the hell to do with myself?  My last day is the 8th Feb (just in time for half term and my birthday!)  so I think I’m going to think through how I can work for myself rather than for someone else. I need flexibility for school and child emergencies, but I don’t have enough startup money for a shop – other than online.

So I’m off to brain storm and finish my friend Amanda’s cupcake store website, she makes the best cakes and cookies! Check out her Fickr Album here

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Shop Rental

So one of the ideas I originally had was to open a store in my local town and sell children’s clothes and baby goods.  We are miles from any decent shopping and I know as a Mum there is nowhere to even buy a pretty party outfit.

So coming back from lunch I saw a very small store had a ‘to let’ sign out the front of it, I thought it was fate as I’d decided yesterday to resign from my job at Christmas! Anyway the lady gave me a flyer and when I got back to the office I worked out how much it would be….14.5k for 645sq feet and half of that was upstairs storage!!! FFS!  The rent wasn’t that bad at 6.5k plus VAT  but there were so many ‘extras’ like a 5k deposit and it went on and on.

So pretty much that is out, I don’t have that kind of money and for location and the tiny size of it, it really wasn’t worth it.  imagine how much business  you could do with google ad words for 14.5k 🙂

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New start

Welcome to my new blog.  I’ve been on here a while as Geek Mum, and whilst I still retain my geeky roots this is primarily a blog for my new business.  I’ve gotten to the point where I don’t think that I’m going to have a job much longer and I don’t think I want to work for someone else again.  I work very hard, I’ve improved the IT business processes hugely where I work and I’ve still after nearly 2 years to get a payrise!

So sod it, I’ll work for myself for a while and see if I can make a go of it 🙂

When I had my daughter, I found a side of myself that was very admiring of handmade goods.  You have to bear in mind I’ve always been a woman who couldn’t see the point of knitting  or sewing when you could buy the same thing in Tesco’s or M&S.  But as my daughter has grown I’m starting to see the point of it all, from knitting (which I still can’t do!) to gardening (which I’m excellent at!) I’ve become a mini Martha.

The idea of this business started a few months ago when I was chatting to my friend Kate about the lack of wearable clothes for my tall 4 year old daughter.  She’s in age 5-6 and soon to be 6-7 and I’ve recently discovered that all the large stores, whilst they carry this size it’s just the same thing they dress the 13-14 years in but smaller and the same price.  Now whilst my daughter *loves* wearing big girl clothes, I really hate her looking like a mini teenager/hooker! We’ve had endless arguments over the subject, which whilst I was expecting this when she was a teen, I wasn’t expecting it at 4 years old.

So I was ranting onto Kate and she pointed out she was a trained dressmaker with a *lot* of vintage 1970’s patterns and a lot of material.  Having chatted to all my friends with daughters of the same age, I realised there is a gap in the market.  All our daughters are tall for their ages (lets face it all teenagers are giant and it hasn’t happened overnight!) and we were fed up with mini skirts and boob tubes as a clothing option for our daughters.

So this is where I’m at at the moment, Kate’s going to make some clothes, we’re going to try and sell them with my web techie know-how.  But the big thing is I need to cross sell, I can’t just sell Kate’s clothes as fab as they are, I need to sell other things.  I’ve seen a load of really beautiful handmade items on the web and I want to buy them all.  I’ll be loading up the blogs that have inspired me on the blog roll later – there are some fabulous ones out there!  Seriously check them out they are wonderful.

Anyway this is the picture that inspired me to just go for it.  It’s my daughter 4 years ago in the blanket her great-grandmother crochet for her.  It’s still a favourite in our household and something I hope to hand down to my grand-children

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